Monday, December 22, 2008

Dichotomy of Light and Darkness


Winter solstice, past by a mere moment now, marks the transition from darkness to light, from death to new life. Yet one more cycle in the grand order of nature has rolled its course and revolves anew, the time of renewal is at hand. While the Indians were also very aware of the peaks and transitions in the universal cycles, especially so in the ancient Vedic times, it was in the North where the extremes stated their presence.

Many of you may have been following Uma's series on the old pagan celebration of Yule, the rebirth of Mother Nature, later remodeled into a grand Christian celebration with an eerie abundance of pagan symbols and practices. While the celebration of these transitions of universal reach indeed has its place in the mesocosmic sphere, a natural turn in the human fabric of old, it is not those I write of today. I'm about to dig deeper into the superficiality of the good-evil duality often imposed on worlds of light and darkness.



The Ancient Aryan Divide

The division into good and evil is regrettably not as clear-cut as God versus Lucifer or Christ versus Antichrist, a lesson well learned from the ancient Indian evolution of religion. Vasistha was among the leading Vedic seers, while for the Zoroastrians he was among the villains. While asuras were the bad guys for the Vedic seers, Ahura-Mazda (or Asura-Maya in Sanskrit, a close relative of the Avestan language of the Parsis) was the lead monotheistic deity of the Zend-Avesta scripture.

These two polar religions came to plant the seeds of two very different religious traditions. Zoroaster was a grand-ancestor for the doctrines of a dual god and anti-god, the expectance of a messiah and a linear approach to the cosmic order. The Abrahamic tradition, or Judaism, Christianity and Islam, evolved in a mixture of Zoroastrian ideals and the ongoing evolutions in Egyptian and Middle-Eastern native polytheistic systems.

A whole different branch and orientation of religion, the greater part of which goes under the loose label of Hinduism in the contemporary world, evolved from the root of the ancestry of Vedic seers. Hinduism as we know it is a loose amalgamation of distinct traditions that evolved under shared cultural premises, a most heterogeneous compilation held together with unitarian texts such as the Bhagavad-gita.

The fact that the two religious divides forming the vast majority of the Earth's population is on a deep level divided almost as deep and fundamentally as the grand cosmic order of the ancient cultures is every bit as exciting as it is scaring. It is then little wonder that the Abrahamic dualist heritage has always sought to reform all known cultures and peoples into the faith of the one true savior, one supreme deity and one word of god, or a succession of subsequent revelations in the case of later traditions.

The Indic tradition, on the other hand, unsubscribed from an ontology that assigned them among the evil, in both its root movements. While the direct descendant of the brahmana-tradition, the heritage of the Vedic seers, maintained a sense of duality evident in the legends of the Puranas, it was against a canvas of higher, nondual ideas evolving from the old Upanishads, tense and often asystematic philosophical discourses that sought the deepest essence of the Vedic sacrifical religion. The Sramana tradition, to which the Buddhists and the Jains are the only surviving heirs, sought to eliminate the realm of duality altogether, and in doing that went so far as to do away with the supreme deity himself.

The roots of the ancient good-evil divide appear to lie in an ancient conflict tearing apart a single cultural heritage, a world where the devas and the asuras dwelled together. Mitra and Varuna, a dual deity of whom the latter is well known as an oceanic deity in the Puranic lore, are in fact among the asuras of the Rig-vedic tradition — asuras receiving oblations just as the devas did. The details of the evolution effectively reduce the concept of an absolute, primordial divide into a partition much more complicated and human, into the internal disagreements of an ancient sacrificial, fire-worshiping culture.



Powers of Light and Darkness

Neither light nor darkness possess inherent ethical value; they are neutral potentials reposed in their own nature. As darkness clouds, creates mystery and brings towards unity, light unveils, explains and exposes a vast arena of plurality prior to growing so bright as to grow all-engulfing, thereby becoming essentially one with darkness again, a field of a single, undivided nature containing all of reality in its ever-vibrant lap. (Udesidning: An ancient Nordic way of integration in darkness.)

Nothing is good or evil of its own nature; all depends on the application, and moreover the applier. Magic is neither good nor evil owing to its technical procedure of conjuration, whether born of light or darkness, white or black. The divider of good and evil is in the human choice between benevolence and malevolence, between sacrificing and feeding the egotic drive consuming its objects to grow stronger.

A transcender of duality wields light and darkness with equal might, regardless of his preference, a preference that in its fundamental essence is only a latent sensation of the past, a game or an amusement of sorts, unbinding to the player who has ascended from a participancy to entertained spectatorship. Having seen the pinnacles of light and darkness under the ancient egotic drive, one evolves into a seer of non-duality, experiencing the inherent voidness of reality as we know it.

With the diffusion of apparent essence and substance into ethereal streams, one transcends stereotypic moral assessments and dwells in a lasting perception of inherent and foundational unity, even while an adept conventionalist as needed in the common world. The art of life has now been mastered.



The Old Pagan Approach

While the philosophical sophistication of Indic traditions is often lacking in ancient native religions, they do an amicable job in the practical transcendence of duality in living in a seamless harmony with nature and gods in their own world of mythos. In fact, many ancient native traditions supersede the seclusion-seeking Indic mystics in their ability to interact with plurality in a state of active integration, perhaps with a flavor of the smooth and flowing natural Tao of the Chinese — a quality I've always been in tremendous awe of!

The action-in-knowledge tradition also found its exponents among the Buddhists with the gradual evolution of Buddhism first into Mahayana, and onwards into an admixture with the tantric tradition especially prominent in Tibet. In the Tibetan model, Hinayana and Mahayana, or the lesser and the greater vehicles, are stepping stones into the highest dimension of vajra-sattva, the lightning-strata, where one becomes a wielder of cosmic powers, conquering and subjugating the energetic release produced in the meeting of the fundamental dualities of nature, the energetic bases of archetypal male and female energy, personified as the man and the woman of the human world.

Transcending and mastering the fundamental fabric of existence, the conscious being evolves into a god-like state of integration with the flow of the cosmos, unveiling the infinite peace and inner ecstasy ever-present in the ultimate non-dual god-experience. Consciousness employs a third strata beyond light and darkness, the infinite halls of existence itself. Night turns into a day and day yet again into a night. Winter falls over the fertile summer fields, spring awakens Mother Nature to life anew. Light and darkness rise and fall time and again of their own accord; the wheel of existence revolves forevermore.

49 comments:

Vegman said...

Ok. What I get from all this is that we should just chant Hare Krishna and be happy.

Lakshanamananda baba said...

-LOL- oh. thank goodness. i was about to ask, "...and your point?" but here's a good enough answer already.

Godhead said...

No! No NO NONO! Shut up Vegman! I do NOT want to hear any more of your chanting - it drives me absolutely NUTS!!

Damn, should I switch off the universe? Or send a few more demons? Oh, I forgot.. these days those are supposed to exist only in our minds and actions.

Gone are ye olde golden days, when mile-tall old women used to terrorise India, gods were frequently found dancing on sea-serpents, and two-year old babies threw donkeys at treetops.

Sniff.

Mr. Ananda said...

Moving down from the Indus valley area, the Aryans were forced to cut down on Soma, no longer available in their new habitat, and settled for a number of inadequate substitutes. Coincidentally Kali-yuga started, gods were no longer seen, and life in general became less laden with myth. The rising of the Shiva-tradition and a new sacred herb made life a bit more palatable again for the sages and seers of yore.

Godhead said...

Yes, that dastardly kali-yuga thing I made up.. It sure can explain a lot of things!

However, I'm not sure how the majority of your planet feels about this whole yuga shebang. I mean, it says somewhere you guys used to live for up to 10 000 years per lifetime.. personally, I'd hate that (I am eternal..)

Just thinking about having to live for 10 000 years without anyone returning my calls or email makes me cry!!

Mr Anonymouse said...

Ananda, what do you think of all the insecurity many HK-adherents seem to display if one asks them more about these legends? Is it because

a) they are having a bad day in general and would get upset at anything, even sunshine and rabbits

b) they feel somewhat awkward to admit they have agreed to take some legends literally - or be expelled from the community as "karmis"

or c) something else, what?

Mr. Ananda said...

Mr. Anonymousse: "Ananda, what do you think of all the insecurity many HK-adherents seem to display if one asks them more about these legends?"

I believe the greatest trouble is with the Godhead's fundamental integration and interaction in the mythologies, alias "ancient history", in the Puranic lore. With this level of immanence, the deity itself becomes suspect whenever elements of the myth fall under suspicion.

For example, Vamana. To believe in Vamana, you need to believe that Bali Maharaja, originally a resident of the nether planetary systems, took over the universe. And you need to believe that the universe is a bubble, the shell of which was pierced by Vamana's toe, resulting in the downflux of the Ganges stream. And so on and so forth. How can you have Vamana without Bali, without the nether worlds of Bila-svarga, without a round and shell-contained universe (with certain rather small dimensions, vide 5th canto Bhag.) floating in a cosmic ocean?

Of course there are ways of reconciling and reinterpreting the myths, but the step beyond literalism is a tough one for most adherents to take, despised as it tends to be as unorthodox by the mainstream tradition.

Anonymous said...

Hi Ananda,

Interesting topic. Also interesting on Unna's blog, her post about back in the day, the Christians forbade the indigenous peoples of Suomi in Finland to just sit around.

I have a question for you, perhaps the topic of new posts in the future: I just read a book by a Biblical scholar, it was a history of the Bible.

He first disclosed his own personal history, that he began as a kid who went to church but parents not much into it, then he got "born again" around same time as KC first came to the west: the period of time of "Jesus Freaks".

Then he went to Moody Bible college, obtained a degree and studied the Bible for the first time in the original language that it was written in.

Then ultimately he obtained PhD as a Biblical scholar from Harvard. and he told about his journey along the way.

What he found was: he started out being "born again" by influence of fundies who said every word is from God.

Then the more he became educated, he realize that scribes copied down the Bible. And alot of mistakes were made, as well as many changes were made to tow the party line of local politics.

[He gave many examples].

Then he stated that the various authors of the books of the Bible were basically just stating their opinions. He cited the many passages were simple books like Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John contradict the same story.

He also said that hardly anyone teaches literary criticism, the populace is uneducated as to this discipline.

His conclusion was that the Bible cannot possibly be the literal word of God. He also documented the changes he went through as he realized this step by step, the more he was educated used the actual papyrus and scrolls and remnants of paper still extant from which the Bible is based.

He also came to the conclusion that if there was a God, is a God, God could have made it very clear what his word was/ is, by making sure that scribes did not make mistakes, people did not change the stories to begin with, original documents were in superlative conditioon, etc.

But sadly, (?), God, if he she or it does exist, chose not to do such a thing. So he could only conclude that the document that is the Bible is basically many different people's opinions.

Also, he said that you cannot even be sure whose opinion it really is. He gave several examples of good copies they have of original letters from the disciple Paul, for example, and then later other people made up letters and attributed to him.

But if you compare linguistically, the type of writing materials used, etc. then is clear is not from him. Especially the content which contradicts itself in regards to secular topics, which he explained were socio-political
in nature.

So reading that book made me think of you, and I was wondering if by the more you learned the original language of the scriptures you were interested in, then your worldview changed.

Also what can you conclude about the personalities who wrote the scriptures you were originally interested in?

In addition, is there any evidence that some of the writings of "The Goswamis" were in fact the writings of several people? Like a writers' collective?

For example, modern math is based on Euclid, but is very difficult to prove Euclid even existed. It may have been a consortium of mathematicians.

Well just some questions that perhaps you would like to address in future posts on your blog.

Thanks!

Mr. Ananda said...

Anonymous, that's a whole bag of interestingness you've got there. A separate write-up is indeed in place, perhaps even as a part of the (almost) ongoing GeeVees series. Reading your comment made a fair dozen topics stream through my head, so I will certainly have something to write on it.

Right now my mom and sister are over for a visit over Christmas, when things settle a bit I'll tackle this in its entirety.

Vegman said...

So, Anandaji, what authority of knowledge have you placed your faith in regarding the histories you are describing?
In other words, where do you get your information from?
Is that authority infallible and unquestionable?

We all have to put our faith in some source of knowledge.

Generally, in intellectual circles, one must validate his assertions and historical claims by citing the source of information.

I have noticed that nowadays you espouse certain ideas without quoting your source?

Are you a historian?
An anthropologist?

If not, then you must be depending on some of them for your information.

Are you really certain that their version of ancient history is without defect, flaw or mistake?

Just curious?

Nimai said...

Is it possible to see the Puranic stories as myth, while still maintaining a literal belief in Krsna? This is a question I am not able to tackle. To me, any modern thinker should have some real issues with accepting the Vamana story as literal. Some thoughts?

Mano.... said...

"Nimai said: Is it possible to see the Puranic stories as myth, while still maintaining a literal belief in Krsna?"

Depends the way we define literal, and the way we define myth, I guess.

Another consideration would be, if we accept God as a person or not. If we accept a spiritual personal dimension, that transcends the ordinary?

With the faith struggles some go through Nimai, I tend to think it would be an easier load to accept a transcendent impersonal viewpoint, rather than trying to live within a fundamentalist view and not being honest (to our orginal inclination).

But something inside prompts me to question, what does personalism really mean? And to search that out a little bit more...

Some of the old traditions like shamanism lived in that mysterious personal realm of plant spirits and animal spirits. And these extra-ordinary states were considered highly...actually able to heal the normal state (that had affliction). So in that sense I think myth has great power, and is life. And is deep within us, and living. And quite possibly very real.

Does that realm have to be transcended oneday? Or, is it best to live now, and make the most of it? To be fully present and seek it here.

Mr. Ananda said...

Um goes the Vegman rap: "So, Anandaji, what authority of knowledge have you placed your faith in regarding the histories you are describing? In other words, where do you get your information from?

Is that authority infallible and unquestionable? We all have to put our faith in some source of knowledge."


See, we all have to derive information from somewhere, but we don't need to place absolute faith in our sources. The myth of infallible knowledge makes me chuckle. You see, I have become much fonder of the other two sources of knowledge aside the absolute revelation; the old ipse dixit proof ("he said it"), the shabda-brahman you so revere, is about as good as taking the collected works of Socrates and Aristotle and hallowing them beyond any reason.


"Generally, in intellectual circles, one must validate his assertions and historical claims by citing the source of information. I have noticed that nowadays you espouse certain ideas without quoting your source?"

Intellectual circles (chuckles) may need to live with the fact that I write in a rather relaxed manner in my blog, and stuff there is straight off my desk. When things eventually go into print, they'll have the proper references in place. Pedantic documentation just tends to be a bit dull for blog purposes.

The bulk of what I write, however, is the outcome of my own rational and deductive processes, and I cite the fury and fervor of my brain as the mighty spring of knowledge.


"Are you a historian? An anthropologist? If not, then you must be depending on some of them for your information. Are you really certain that their version of ancient history is without defect, flaw or mistake?"

See, the wonderful thing here is that instead of stagnating into a fixed set of absolute truths that are unamendable, we are at liberty to admit mistakes and constantly improve upon the earlier knowledge, make constant progress in discovering more and more accurate knowledge.

Mr. Ananda said...

Nimai: "Is it possible to see the Puranic stories as myth, while still maintaining a literal belief in Krsna? This is a question I am not able to tackle. To me, any modern thinker should have some real issues with accepting the Vamana story as literal. Some thoughts?"

Let me rephrase.

"Is it possible to see the 10th canto of the Bhagavata-purana as myth, while still maintaining a literal belief in Krishna?"

How can your faith in Krishna be literal, while all the rest is allegorical? Krishna must also convert into a symbol of a higher principle if you go down the path of non-literalism and intelligent interpretation.

Anonymous said...

"Is it possible to see the 10th canto of the Bhagavata-purana as myth, while still maintaining a literal belief in Krishna?"

I think this question is much better addressed to Haridas Shastri Maharaj-ji or Satyanarayan das, instead of some confused boy like ananda

Mr. Ananda said...

It was actually me who posited the question. By all means, go and ask them. Then we can discuss how dogmatic vs. substantial the interpretations are. Strict adherents often come up with dodgy apologetics, though HDS has come up with some good apparently original thinking of his own.

Your comment betrays an unfortunate orientation for seeking a single correct point of view.

Mr. Ananda said...

Comments containing name-calling and other general negativity and disinterest in my writings are being transfered to transcendence. If you feel it's worthless here, you're most welcome to not stick around.

I am indeed not the only person to ever have left GV, though the level of attention received from the strait-jacketers seems to imply otherwise.

shiva said...

I wrote this 4 years ago:

There are different levels of understanding in the Bhagavatam; it gives both literal and allegorical narratives throughout. They serve a dual purpose for people on different levels of consciousness. In the modern age we face a very different reality than the pre-technological world. Today we can observe the cosmos with help from modern technology; in vedic times this was impossible. So the vedic cosmological conception, on the literal level, is for the audience of the vedic/non-technological world.

The mythological mindset is superior to the "modern" scientific world view because it is designed for the purpose of creating a view of the world that is full of magic and unlimited possibilities. That mindset is full of exotic phenomena where mystical and fantastic possibilities are seen as the norm. That mindset is what the residents of non-technological society can experience. There, there is no modern science, there is no technology to contradict the fantasy realm that is created for their minds. Until modern technology, this was the case for the entire world. All cultures had a mythological, fantasy worldview. They viewed the world around them as a magical realm full of magical creatures and magical possibilities.

That is actually a superior mindset in terms of enjoyment, than the mundane reality. In the famous Wizard of Oz we find that the Wizard told Dorothy and her friends to ignore "the man behind the curtain". The façade of the great and terrible wizard was what was being offered to the residents of the magical Emerald City as absolute reality.

The Bhagavatam cosmology and mythology serves the purpose of creating a fantastical worldview for non-technological civilizations. It is superior to the mundane scientific reality; it is specifically designed to create a world of magic for the people in that society, it enhances their lives with an outlook full of magical fantastical possibilities, all created by the Vedic literature.

In the current world situation the magical worldview is not sustainable for all people. Especially people who are scientifically educated and very rationalistic rather than romantic and non-questioning when it comes to acceptance of an irrational [scientifically speaking] worldview. This is to be expected and is not a sign of a lack of some kind of humility or overt materialism. It is the nature of the modern age that scientific technological discoveries will naturally override flat-earth cosmology and mythology.

The Bhagavatam and other sastras have a dual role: they teach self-realization, and they create a magical worldview. The parts of sastra that are incompatible with modern discoveries are written in such a way that they have allegorical meaning besides the literal meanings meant for a non-technological audience.

The Bhagavatam was not written by people who were unaware of the future of scientific advancement. The Bhagavatam is the word of, and designed by, Bhagavan. The Bhagavatam is not limited by time and space. It was written with full knowledge of the technological society that occurs during Kali Yuga, for that is when the Bhagavatam gains the highest readership. So it was not written without us in mind. It is full of allegorical meaning meant just for us.

Non-technological society is able to accept the Bhagavatam at face value; they have no way, and therefore no need, to question the validity of the worldview propounded therein.

We live in a different world. Questioning the validity of the Bhagavatam is not only natural, it is expected; the Bhagavatam was written with us in mind.

Knowing this, we can understand why the Bhagavatam is obviously wrong on many accounts of cosmology. Its purpose was never about being scientifically correct. It was about being creative, about creating a fantastic world for people to believe in. Part of its purpose is to create a world of magic for the people in non-technological society.

For us, the essential value of the Bhagavatam is in the teachings on self-realization. So when people naturally question the validity of the Bhagavatam, based on its questionable cosmology and magical worldview, we need to be able to react in a non-dogmatic, non-insulting manner. We need to be able to explain the purpose of the Bhagavatam. It serves different people and different audiences at different times. We need not throw out the baby with the bathwater.

-------------

To the person who wrote about a book he read about a bible scholar losing faith that the bible is teh word of God:

That person was right and wrong. It depends on what you consider to be "the word of God".

As conscious beings we lack the ability to do anything without the aid of God. We may think otherwise, we may think we are independent actors, but really that is due to ignorance and is an illusion.

We don't control how our memory functions, therefore we don't control our thought process because comprehension of words and concepts is completely dependent on memory. We don't control our thoughts because we don't know how. We don't control comprehension of our thoughts because we don't know how. Yet our thoughts flow through our mind and we understand them. It's a very magical reality which we have absolutely no control nor understanding of, that due to ignorance and illusion we take to be simplistic, mundane, and under our total control.

There is a reason that in the Gita Krishna says repeatedly that the atma is not the "doer". The jivamta is incapable of doing anything independently because we are incapable of controlling our thoughts. The reality of how the thought process/comprehension process/memory process functions is beyond our limited ability to control.

As you read this, these words are being spoken in your mind, you can "hear" these words being spoken as you read. You think you control this voice in your mind. But this voice is not under your control, you don't even know what this voice is, what to speak of knowing how to control it. Try to read these words without allowing this voice to speak these words as you read. You cannot. This voice is not you and it is not under your control.

The jivatma is incapable of creating this voice or controlling it. The technology which creates this voice and controls it, and which enables you the ability to comprehend what these words or this voice is saying, is also beyond the jivatmas ability to even understand, what to speak of control.

When Krishna in the Gita says that he is giving us memory, knowledge, and forgetfullness, that antaryami is guiding everyone from within, that everyone follows Krishna's path in all respects, this is what he is talking about. We are simply incapable of understanding and controlling the highly sophisticated and complex technology which manifests this voice in your mind and which enables you to comprehend words and remember all that you do. It would take a being with the abilities of a computer to do what jivatmas take for granted as being under their control.

So, in one sense the person who lost faith in the bible as the word of God was wrong because God is controlling everyone in everything they do because jivatmas are incapable of doing anything without the guidance and actual moment to moment control of God manifesting our thoughts, (this voice) and giving us memory and comprehension (through this voice). Jivatmas would need to be like computers with the ability to be always aware of everything we ever experienced in order to be able to remember and comprehend everything we do. Only God has that innate computing ability.

Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 11.28.6-7

The Supersoul alone is the ultimate controller and creator of this world, and thus He alone is also the created. Similarly, the Soul of all existence Himself both maintains and is maintained, withdraws and is withdrawn. No other entity can be properly ascertained as separate from Him, the Supreme Soul, who nonetheless is distinct from everything and everyone else. The appearance of the threefold material nature, which is perceived within Him, has no actual basis. Rather, you should understand that this material nature, composed of the three modes, is simply the product of His illusory potency.

Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 11.13.24

Within this world, whatever is perceived by the mind, speech, eyes or other senses is Me alone and nothing besides Me. All of you please understand this by a straightforward analysis of the facts.

Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 3.28.42,44

A yogi should see the same soul in all manifestations, for all that exists is a manifestation of different energies of the Supreme. In this way the devotee should see all living entities without distinction. That is realization of the Supreme Soul.

Thus the yogī can be in the self-realized position after conquering the insurmountable spell of māyā, who presents herself as both the cause and effect of this material manifestation and is therefore very difficult to understand.

Mano.... said...

Thx for the article Shiva. Ananda made a good point earlier about moving forward in thinking and not being stagnant (or something to that effect). It would would be nice to hear your thinking now, 4 years after your article, and where you hold the Bhagavatam in your life.

Someone the other day said they don't want a make-believe God. It made me think, am I ready to believe in magic? And let go...

Definately the Bhagavatam and Gita were written for a diverse audience. Possibly by a very intelligent priestly order (and that does not deny that the intelligence comes from a higher state of being), with one one of their goals to keep society coherent. Even today I presume commentators on these books have that as one of their goals also.

Some days that approach steals the magic from my heart...but hey, there is a lot of other folk around to consider. Maybe most people need a foundation to keep coherent? Maybe some don't.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Ananda!

Have a wonderful Saturnalia with the parental and sibling units of Suomiland!

Vegman said...

In case nobody knows it. I have mystic powers. I can talk with my feet.
You don't believe me?
Just listen.

Vegman said...

When you are wise and know the secret of knowledge, you can hear the barking frogs and and find yourself.
Then your Momma tells you to get your hand out of your pajamas and the search must begin anew.

Anonymous said...

I am indeed not the only person to ever have left GV, though the level of attention received from the strait-jacketers seems to imply otherwise.

It only seems that way because you make your life so public, in an attempt to create a larger than life persona that your ego feeds off of.

It's obvious, obnoxious and most of all false.

Mr. Ananda said...

It only seems that way because you make your life so public, in an attempt to create a larger than life persona that your ego feeds off of. It's obvious, obnoxious and most of all false.

Hate to break the news, but I do have a largeish life going on off the limelights of the internet, too. How much of my world do you figure gets online? A miniscule fragment. I enjoy the online exchanges as well, but they certainly do not define my sphere of life!

Vegman said...

I would just like to point out that in Vaishnavism there is more to it than just ancient texts that espouse certain histories and absolute claims of a divine autocrat.
In Vaishnavism there is a chain of self-realized masters who have validated through personal realization the spiritual reality espoused in the Bhagavat and Vaishnava texts.

It is not just about believing in old books.

It is about believing in the self-realized acharyas who have themselves ascended to the lofty heights of transcendence and validated the Vaishnava dictums.

We don't just believe in old books.
We believe in all the Gaudiya acharyas and Mahaprabhu.

We believe in the Goswamis of Vrindavan, Vishvanatha Chakravarti, Baladeva Vidyabhusana, Bhaktivinode, Siddhanta Saraswata, Bhaktivedanta Swami, Sridhara Dev-goswami etc. and all the great self-realized acharyas of the Gaudiya sampradaya.

It is not just about believing in old books, but in the great sages and saints of the sampradaya who have all gone up to the well-spring of truth and drunk the water of immortality.

Vegman said...

So, it all boils down to Mr. Ananda is now claiming that all the Goswamis and acharyas of the Gaudiya sampradaya are fools and idiots who were duped by some old books and wasted their lives believing in some old Vedic mythology.
Now, Mr. Ananda asserts that he has risen above the stupidity and naivety that victimized the six goswamis of Vrindavana, Vishvanatha Chakravarti, Baladeva Vidyabhusana etc. etc. etc.

Now, Mr. Ananda asserts that they were all simply misguided fools who wrongly placed their beliefs in some old books and wasted their lives chasing after a God that doesn't exist.

Well, I think we all know who the real idiot is and it is not the six Goswamis of Vrindavan.

Mr. Ananda said...

"It is about believing in the self-realized acharyas who have themselves ascended to the lofty heights of transcendence and validated the Vaishnava dictums.

We don't just believe in old books.
We believe in all the Gaudiya acharyas and Mahaprabhu."


Whatever you believe in! Written by Gaudiya acharyas or someone before them, it's old books all the same, old books that draw their authority from unverifiable (for all practical purposes) revelations. Some of them of more theological interest, some less.

And if I choose to not deposit my unconditional faith in these folk, it should not be your task or anyone's to enforce a fully black and white order and division of populace, where something is either all absolute truth or all brainfarts by idiots.


"Now, Mr. Ananda asserts that they were all simply misguided fools who wrongly placed their beliefs in some old books and wasted their lives chasing after a God that doesn't exist."

Now you're giving it the Advaitadas twist, aren't you! This all seems so familiar! You have no idea on my stance on the bulk of the issues you "quote" me on, so you might as well just shut the fuck up and not make yourself any more of an embarassment you already are, don't you think?

Mr. Ananda said...

Oh yea, and some of Shiva's writing is pretty good, though I need to muster courage over a few more joints before I start wading to its farther shore.

Vegman said...

Mr Ananda wrote:
"Whatever you believe in! Written by Gaudiya acharyas or someone before them, it's old books all the same, old books that draw their authority from unverifiable (for all practical purposes) revelations. Some of them of more theological interest, some less".


Well, Mr. Ananda, not everyone requires that their theosophical beliefs be fully rationalized in their tiny pea brain.

Most all faith requires acceptance of the fact that if in fact there is a transcendent absolute entity whom is the well-spring of all existances, that he must surely possess inexhaustible and inconceivable characteristics that can never be fully rationalized in the human mind.

We all live by placing our faith in something and someone.

If you have chosen to withdraw your faith from the Gaudiya theological system and put it in secular historians and anthropologists and THEIR OLD BOOKS of unverifiable theories, then that is certainly your option.

But, don't expect your old comrades from the Gaudiya community to have must respect for the hamburger gobbling vodka drinkers that you are now so conveniently putting your faith in.

Hamburger Das Vodkachary said...

Most people who spend their time "preaching" HK religion online are burned out guys who haven't chanted for years and they try to get rid of their guilt and prove how vedick they are by bashing others who are not on their side.

Vegman said...

Hamburger Das Vodkachary said...
Most people who spend their time "preaching" HK religion online are burned out guys who haven't chanted for years and they try to get rid of their guilt and prove how vedick they are by bashing others who are not on their side.

end quote>>>>


You are just jealous because you don't have a widget devoted to you on this blog.
That my friend is reserved for the elite of the elite.

Mr. Ananda said...

Vegman: "You are just jealous because you don't have a widget devoted to you on this blog.
That my friend is reserved for the elite of the elite."


And right you are. Thanks for the reminder, I have updated the widget accordingly!

Vegman said...

Mr. Ananda said...
"Vegman: "You are just jealous because you don't have a widget devoted to you on this blog.
That my friend is reserved for the elite of the elite."

And right you are. Thanks for the reminder, I have updated the widget accordingly!"

What the F?
I am so hurt.
My widget has been defaced by some hacker who substituted me with a Rakshasa.

Ananda, please get to the bottom of this and correct this disgrace immediately.

If my widget doesn't get purified soon, I will have to rethink my participation on this blog.

Mr. Ananda said...

"What the F? I am so hurt."

I'm sorry, it was mean of me to do on Christmas day. I've made it up in the spirit of good ol' times — I'm sure you remember!! =)

Vegman said...

Wow! Anandaji, you really know how make it all right.
Yeah, I remember.
I don't know how to thank you.
I feel so special.

You know Ananda, my kids aren't really Hare Krishna people.

I couldn't subject them to the challenges I faced trying to believe in Krishna and live in secular USA.

But, I love my kids with all my heart, even though they aren't Hare Krishna people.

I never tried to make them as such.

shiva said...

mano you wrote:

Thx for the article Shiva. Ananda made a good point earlier about moving forward in thinking and not being stagnant (or something to that effect). It would would be nice to hear your thinking now, 4 years after your article, and where you hold the Bhagavatam in your life.

I still believe the same thing, although I only gave a part of my understanding in that article. So much of what people consider to be "Krishna consciousness" or the "Gaudiya Vaishnava Puranic inspired world view" is based upon taking literally -- writings that are ultimately not literally true. The Vamana saga mentioned by Ananda is a good example, as are all the traditional Vishnu avatar stories, of transcendental magical realism, intended to create an exciting romantic fantasy escapist weltanschauung for the average person when taken literally, but which also hold deeper metaphysical truths when understood allegorically.

It's interesting how different people develop different ideas about what is reality when they gain faith in Vaishnava Puranic world views.

Some view all of it very literally, e.g. they believe that there are demigods who control most aspects of our world, they believe in ghosts and the power of amulets and mantras to protect them from malevolent spirit beings, they believe the lila of avatars such as Vishnu and Shiva or Devi when they appear on earth happened (and continue to happen on other planets) in exactly the way they are described in the Puranas, Mahabharata, etc. That is the view preached by many or probably most Vaishnava gurus and their followers in the various Vaishnava sampradayas. They usually preach a literalistic fundamentalist Vaishnavism, more literalistic even than the writers of the Vedas; where for instance we see the devas being referred to as manifestations of the same supreme God. Good arguments have been made to show that the devas in the Vedas also were meant as personifications of God's control over the forces of nature.

Usually the literalistic fundamentalist will reject the idea that what they believe to be literal truth and literally real, is really more often than not, not. They may even claim an allegorical interpretation of what they accept as literal truth - to be blasphemous, the product of a lack of faith, or a deluded mind.

For example a while back I wrote a comment on Advaita Das' blog which he wouldn't post (see at bottom of this post), the reason he gave was that it went against what he considered to be authentic Gaudiya theology, and that it would confuse or mislead people. I was commenting on something Ananda had written on his previous blog about the Rig Veda verses where Ananda thought they were referring to the origin of the world. I said Ananda was wrong, that in fact those verses were about the origin of God. In the fundamentalist literalistic vision of Advaita Das, because the word anadi, beginningless, is used often in sastra to describe various things, e.g. the jiva or God, therefore God has always existed and lived in the exact same way God is doing today.

Gaudiya Vaishnava preachers usually never differ from that point of view. They generally preach that God and God's creation are eternal - to them meaning "no beginning and no end". They don't see the contradiction in that concept, i.e. creation means a beginning, complex purposeful structures like bodies, houses, furniture, etc, had to have been conceived of and designed by a mind before they could exist. Therefore the Vaikuntha worlds where there is a divine human society where God has "eternal" pleasure pastimes, had to have a beginning. Gaudiya preachers usually preach that the Vaikuntha worlds have always existed. Even though logically it is 100% impossible. Usually they write off these logical contradictions in their literalist understanding of Vaishnavism by claiming that we are incapable of understanding how the seemingly impossible becomes possible in the mysterious inconceivable timeless "spiritual world".

They take literally Krishna's statement in Gita 2.12 to mean that we have always existed as we are now, when more likely and logically Krishna simply meant that we have lived previous lives to the present one, and that being a part of God we have always existed in an abstract metaphorical sense, not that we have literally always lived as individuals somewhere.

Another example of literalism gone amok: For years Ananda argued pretty strongly against me when I tried to point out that a literal understanding of Krishna's rasa-lila is logically self-contradictory because the sastras and previous acharyas all agree that Radha and Krishna were the same all pervading supreme being - that the only difference between them is their bodily forms and personas. "Logically and rationally", I argued, "how could God's supposedly most ecstatically enjoyable and highest pastime be centered around a romance with himself in a different body? How could a sane person have a romantic relationship with themself?" I argued that the writings about Krishna lila, and especially rasa-lila, on the literal level, only serves as something to inspire people to take up Krishna bhakti. That in reality it wasn't a literal revelation of God's highest and most intimate pastimes. The true higher pastimes were in those same writings but only seen when taking those writings metaphorically, e.g. Radha and her expansions represent God's enjoying nature (hladini) and Krishna represented what was to be enjoyed by God's enjoying nature. But since Radha and Krishna are the same person, in the writings about rasa-lila Krishna is a symbol for the jivas, i.e. God's highest enjoying pastimes in reality is not erotica and romance with himself in drag, it's with other people - the jivatmas. And since God's enjoying aspect (hladini) is female, therefore God's most intimate pastimes are erotic romantic relationships between God as a female and male jivas - represented symbolically in the writings on rasa-lila between Radha and Krishna. That was the metaphoric intent of Sri Caitanya's lila. Sri Caitanya is said to be Radha and Krishna combined, come in the outward form of Krishna wit the inner persona of Radha. In other words Radha and Krishna are one person, but Radha is really the inner soul of Krishna because she is the identity that Krishna takes on for the most enjoyment.

At first Ananda and others (mostly Jagat) argued that the basis of my statements were faulty because Radha was in fact not God, and that therefore she and Krishna are not the same person. But I proved to most of them by using the sastra and the writings of the previous acharyas that they all consistently said that Radha was God, and that she was Krishna's female aspect - and that there was no authentic sastric teaching where Radha is said to exist in some special category other than God or jivatmas. Then Ananda and others (mostly Jagat) argued that even if Radha is God, still inconceivably she is a different person than Krishna and that the writings on rasa-lila are literally true depictions of the highest reality.

They had fallen into the same type of denial mode as those who claim that the logical contradictions one encounters when taking all of Vaishnava teachings literally, can be written off as mysterious and inconceivable to our limited minds. They rejected the idea of a higher metaphorical understanding because they couldn't believe that they had been so totally mistaken all those many years they considered themselves to be enlightened masters of Gaudiya Vaishnavism.

When you think that you know the ontology of absolute reality perfectly well, but then you are confronted with a basic logical absurdity at a very basic level of what you believe to be absolute reality, some people go into denial mode because they can't believe that their world view was based so much upon such an obviously flawed conception. Others accept their past mistakes and move forward.

Some people cannot deal with that blow to their ego and retreat even further into the fantasy they have believed in (Jagat and his endless poetic musings on the love between Radha and Krishna, Advaita and his endless detailing of the minutea of a literal understanding of rasa-lila) or they may eventually lose faith entirely in their faulty world view and adopt an entirely new faulty world view (Ananda).

-------------------------------------------

The following is what I posted at Advaita's blog some time back, but he didn't post it because he claimed it goes against Gaudiya teachings.

-------------------------------------------


In his [url=http://www.vrajajournal.com/blog/Gods_Forsaken%2C_Paradise_Lost]latest blog Madhava quotes[/url] from the Rig Veda and then gives a comment.

"Then was not non-existence nor existence: there was no realm of air, no sky beyond it. What covered in, and where? and what gave shelter? Was water there, unfathomed depth of water? Death was not then, nor was there aught immortal: no sign was there, the day's and night's divider. That One Thing, breathless, breathed by its own nature: apart from it was nothing whatsoever. Darkness there was at first concealed in darkness this. All was indiscriminated chaos. All that existed then was void and formless: by the great power of Warmth was born that Unit. Thereafter rose Desire in the beginning, Desire, the primal seed and germ of Spirit. Sages who searched with their heart's thought discovered the existent's kinship in the non-existent.

Transversely was their severing line extended: what was above it then, and what below it? There were begetters, there were mighty forces, free action here and energy up yonder. Who verily knows and who can here declare it, whence it was born and whence comes this creation? The devas are later than this world's production. Who knows then whence it first came into being? He, the first origin of this creation, whether he formed it all or did not form it, whose eye controls this world in highest heaven, he verily knows it, or perhaps he knows not." - (Rig Veda 10.129.1-7)

Madhava's comment:

'The above, so it seems to me anyway, is in spirit more proximate to the Buddhist doctrine of Pratitya-samutpada or Dependent Arising than it is to the later Hindu creation mythos featuring a personal deity pulling the strings. In general, the Upanishadic versions of creation are worth a study for people who haven't familiarized themselves with anything beyond the Puranic version."

Madhava missed the point. Clearly it says:

"Who knows then whence it first came into being? He, the first origin of this creation, whether he formed it all or did not form it, whose eye controls this world in highest heaven, he verily knows it, or perhaps he knows not."

Clearly this first being, "the first origin of this creation", is said to "control this world in highest heaven".

What the above is talking about is no less then the birth of God. While usually in the vedic canon it is taught that God is without beginning, and that the spiritual and material worlds are also beginningless, in the Rig Veda, in the above, is another story, a more complex story.

On the one hand God is without beginning, on the other hand there logically had to be a beginning of God's creations. If we say that Vaikuntha has always existed, then we run into a paradox. Vaikuntha is described as being of people, places, and things. A human like society. There you will find houses, vegetation, food, human forms, animals, furniture, musical instruments, etc. Can any of those things exist without being designed and created? No. A house cannot have always existed. It had to be originally designed. Human forms (contrary to evolutionist folderol) with their complementary complex dual gender natures, likewise had to have been originally designed. They could not exist unless they were brought into existence by a mind which formulated a plan and design and then brought that design into existence. So Vaikuntha had to have been designed and brought into existence by the mental plan and design of it's creator. Likewise the material world.

So that leads to acknowledgment of the pre-Vaikuntha and pre-material world epoch. What was God doing before he designed and created everything? Trying to figure out how to make use of his time and ability! The above verse in the Rig Veda tells us the origin of God, although in one sense God is beginningless, in another sense God changed or evolved from one state into other states over time.

In order for God to create what has been created, God would first have to have needed to figure out how to do it. A mango tree is no easy feat. God actually had to figure out how to design and build a mango tree, from the seed to the fruit. How did God do it? We have to go back to the beginning.

First God had to be able to communicate with him/her-self. The first language was the language God created to enable him/her-self to be able to make sense of everything. If you don't have a language then your mind cannot develop. You need to be able to make sense of reality and a language is absolutely necessary for the mind to develop in any meaningful sense. So before God created anything else, God created a language. Once God was able to use viable language in order to communicate with, then God was able to start to master his/her inherent awesome abilities. From that point on it was just a matter of time until, through trial and error, God was able to gradually educate him/her-self on the extent of God's abilities. What we see today is part of what God was able to accomplish.

But what about before God created a language? A language is a construct, it had to be designed, it had to have an origin. God wasn't always able to communicate with him/her-self with a language, before God created the first language, there was a beginningless period of time. The origin of God as God is what the text from the Rig Veda is about.

"Then was not non-existence nor existence: there was no realm of air, no sky beyond it. What covered in, and where? and what gave shelter? Was water there, unfathomed depth of water? Death was not then, nor was there aught immortal: no sign was there, the day's and night's divider. That One Thing, breathless, breathed by its own nature: apart from it was nothing whatsoever. Darkness there was at first concealed in darkness this. All was indiscriminated chaos. All that existed then was void and formless: by the great power of Warmth was born that Unit. Thereafter rose Desire in the beginning, Desire, the primal seed and germ of Spirit. Sages who searched with their heart's thought discovered the existent's kinship in the non-existent"

Something has always existed. If anything exists then something has always existed. This is because if there was ever a time when nothing existed, then there would have been nothing to cause something to come into existence. Therefore something has always existed. There is no beginning of the primeval state of existence. Whatever that primeval substance was, it was not intelligent, but it was alive, and it was everywhere. As the Rig Veda says:

"That One Thing, breathless, breathed by its own nature: apart from it was nothing whatsoever."

Intelligence was to come later, then self-searching, then creation of self-communication through symbols and language. Then came knowledge of how to use those discovered inherent powers of infinity and vast intellectual ability.

But before that, from a state without beginning, there was an infinite being of infinite potential, not yet awake to it's full potential. Then something happened. The Rig Veda says;

"All that existed then was void and formless: by the great power of Warmth was born that Unit. Thereafter rose Desire in the beginning, Desire, the primal seed and germ of Spirit."

From an unconscious state, that original infinite primeval substance/being, awakened, it became desirous. From an unconscious living infinite field of primeval energy/substance, at some point it awakened and desired to do something. At that point it truly became God, although it would go through a period of self-discovery before learning the extent of it's abilities. The Rig Veda then says:

"Transversely was their severing line extended: what was above it then, and what below it? There were begetters, there were mighty forces, free action here and energy up yonder. Who verily knows and who can here declare it, whence it was born and whence comes this creation? The devas are later than this world's production. Who knows then whence it first came into being? He, the first origin of this creation, whether he formed it all or did not form it, whose eye controls this world in highest heaven, he verily knows it, or perhaps he knows not."

Here we are being told of the situation God found him/her-self in when first awakened to his/her situation:

"Transversely was their severing line extended: what was above it then, and what below it? There were begetters, there were mighty forces, free action here and energy up yonder. Who verily knows and who can here declare it, whence it was born and whence comes this creation?"

We cannot imagine the situation. These metaphoric words are meant to convey that when first awakened, God was confronted with an awesome reality, a reality of infinite scope, infinite presence, infinite powers, beyond anything which we can possibly imagine. And it is was all unknown how God got to be in that situation to God. Knowledge would come later, after figuring out how to communicate and after searching and learning the extent of his/her reality. God was born into an awesome and complex reality, without knowing where or what was going on. The Rig Veda tells us:

"Who knows then whence it first came into being? He, the first origin of this creation, whether he formed it all or did not form it, whose eye controls this world in highest heaven, he verily knows it, or perhaps he knows not"

Here we are told that the being who was the first, he may or may not know how he came to exist, but he is that being "whose eye controls THIS world in highest heaven". Whether or not God knows how he came to exist, whether he is self created or not, he is still in control over everything at this point in time.

God as God had to have a beginning because knowledge is not inherent in anything. Knowledge is something which is only acquired by a mind. Knowledge comes from learning, from experience. Before there is learning and experience there is no knowledge. Therefore all knowledge God has was acquired. Before God acquired knowledge there was a stage of unconscious existence without beginning. The primeval substance of reality was God, but God in an unconscious state. God was originally an infinite field of energy/substance, alive but unconscious. It had to be infinite because nothing cannot exist anywhere, it's a self contradictory proposition to believe that nothing exists. Therefore the primeval substance/unconscious God, existed everywhere and comprised everything in existence. Through some type of reaction a change occurred, the Rig Veda says:

"That One Thing, breathless, breathed by its own nature: apart from it was nothing whatsoever. Darkness there was at first concealed in darkness this. All was indiscriminated chaos. All that existed then was void and formless: by the great power of Warmth was born that Unit."

Something changed in the infinite unconscious being "by the great power of warmth", and it became conscious, self-aware. When did this happen? Who can say? Billions or trillions or trillions to the trillionth power of years ago? Or a trillion trillion times that? In the realm of infinite time even those amounts of time are like a grain of sand on a beach.

Mano.... said...

Shiva thx for replying to me.

Shiva said "It's interesting how different people develop different ideas about what is reality when they gain faith in Vaishnava Puranic world views."

Yes indeed it is interesting. I presume for various reasons, one being the impressions we accept and formulate in our ongoing thought. Which is congruent with your Rig Veda understanding of God, I feel, in some ways.


Shiva said "They take literally Krishna's statement in Gita 2.12 to mean that we have always existed as we are now, when more likely and logically Krishna simply meant that we have lived previous lives to the present one, and that being a part of God we have always existed in an abstract metaphorical sense, not that we have literally always lived as individuals somewhere."

In Srila Bhaktisiddhanta's speech 'Relative Worlds' he presses home very strongly the reality of a transcendental Goloka. Therefore he refutes forms of anthropomorphism, gnosis etc. But instead coins a phrase 'beautiful gnosis'. Now, that seems to be the whole crux of current Gaudiya practice and bhajan - acceptance of the trancendent realm and re-tainment of individual existence within that pinnacle.

The idea of the individual soul having a spiritual body eternal, is only a formulation or description in my opinion. I feel Shiva, not to take a stand on these issues directly (or deny), but to consider the possibilities - and that 'which will remain'.

For example, if consciousness is an eternal substance something will remain, whereas that substance may have very little to do with the grosser matter of my body (but saying that the gross is a vehicle and the subtle lies within it presently,manifesting that which will be). Sheldrake (if my recall and understanding is correct) suggested an over-soul. A novel idea that the total soul expresses itself in manifestation and evolves that way. Similar to your ideas of Rig Veda maybe. Even that deserves some consideration - considering the subject of transcendence etc...surely the fundamentalist cannot hold claim to complete knowledge. Even if he backs it by scriptural verse as you suggest, it is still an interpretation of that which is not fully understood. Whereas if we hold to an unfoldment of understanding in consciousness, then the understanding is an evolutionary encounter. Always fresh. This is obvious in the minute individual human encounter, why not in the whole?

If our personal life experience is a morphosis of type (of a whole), and the dividing line, between the transcendent-inconceivable and experiential, is a fine line...I feel there is no need to discount the concept of Goloka. As a description of a pinnacle or Omega. As a cultivation to where we wish to move... Almost as if it, (the omega), is intuited within, and expressed in scriptures.

The problem I find with a Goloka type vision these days, is if all are expected to conform to that set structure. I feel that is limiting the destiny aspired for. Many fundamentalists seem to have that approach, whereas I never considered that in vedanta or consciousness.It always sat poorly with me. I would prefer to hold to the idea that diversity (and humanity) can converge and realize its one wholesome organic destiny...where nothing is discounted. But instead where everything has led to 'Its' manifestation and fulfillment.

Saying that, it will develop ;)

Is all this conducive to Gaudiya bhajan? Unfortunately, probably not.

Mano.... said...

a short question ananda, how do I use tags in blogger. The italics etc?

thx

Vegman said...

Mano.... said...
a short question ananda, how do I use tags in blogger. The italics etc?

end quote>>>>

Ananda is very stoned now. He will reply to you some time after the new year when he sobers up and get's his dick back in his kaupins.

Mr. Ananda said...

I don't even need kaupins on to tell you in between joints you can just use regular HTML tags like < i > and < b > (remove spaces) for special effects.

Anonymous said...

Get over it Shiva you will never be one of the hotties. Ananda, blooped and all, still comands more attention at any random silly post he throws out there these days than you have managed to gather in nearly a decade of your long and boring posts everywhere on the net. Jagat, you have even seen the dust left by Jagat; even the dim witted Advaitadas is more interesting than you!

Just face it pal, you just don't have it.

In a galaxy far far away out there perhaps someone is ready for your brand of spaceballs.

Meanwhile here on earth, what can we say, Kshamabhudi has stated it best, "We love Uranus".

Malati dasi - Oz said...

Madhavanandadas, bring it on!

And Vegman and Shiva will throw their wisdom against yours.

And hey, you gutless anonymous, and those with jealous streak for him, Advaitadas just has it: a KILLER LOGIC. Even Jagat, with his PHD, will find it hard to escape Advaitadas' logic. And I will say this AGAIN: Advaitadas is one of the best minds and hearts of Gvism. Not to mention that he has the the full backing of the shastra and our acharyas. How can he lose in a debate?

In the recent months, my 17 year old son has been giving me lectures on quantum mechanics which sparked my interests in physics and cosmology. And the more I read about physics and cosmology (mostly from the prestigious magazine Scientific American) the more I can understand what the Vedas is saying about the transcendental realm, eg. Goloka,the age of our universe, about time and space.

Although, I still think physics will NOT FIND GOD , the world of physics is also talking about multiverses -- many universes with different properties or law of physics different from our own universe. So those "mythical stories" some of you here think are illogical and improbable, just think about a world with a different law of physics.

I was reading Sri Krishna the God of Love by Baba Premananda Bharati (available from Nitai das' bookstore) and he talks about time as always is and time as motion of change and I can relate that to an article in Scien. American that theorizes that time does not flow. (BTW, time is one of the most misunderstood concept in physics, even scientists/philosophers concede that). Obvioulsy, Baba Bharati had mined his ideas from the Vedas, the springeternal of the GV theosophy.

I was reading in the same magazine an interview with Brian Greene, a prominent proponent of the string theory from which the multiverses idea hinges on and I was wondering if he gets his ideas from the Vedic literature because I think his brother is a devotee, an SP disciple.

I have read a few times that science reckons that our universe, our observable universe is 14 billion years old (this universe includes our solar system , sun + planets which is 5 billion years old) the same estimate (14 bil.) the Vedas gives. What a coincidence!

Of course, my faith does not hinge on the validity of the cosmology or physical concepts in the Vedas, but I can only think that my faith helps me realize that THERE MUST BE SOMETHING and BIG SOMEONE OUT THERE.

Believe me I have walked on many different paths, but none as beautiful and elaborate in its ontology and philosophy as the system of Gvism

(This is not to show off my little knowledge of physics, but my interest in understanding the system and philosophy of Gvism led me to it).

Hare Krishna

Malati dasi - Oz said...

And

Madhavanandadas, Sorry to nip your buddhist bud this early.

I have just read that physicists think that even void contains so-called dark energy.

I like that-- makes me think of Shyamasundar's energy.

btw, the Gvism door is still open for you!

Haribol!

Vegman said...

The only "dark energy" Ananda can understand now is the "skidmarks" in his boxers, now that he has renounced yellow stains in his kaupins.

Anonymous said...

Advaitadas does not debate. By his misrepresention of the tradition, if there would be a debate, he would take the oxygen out of it. He may impress devotees who have not fully outgrown their Iskcon and Gaudiya Math samskars but will never satisfy those who are looking for genuine realization. His are essentially mechanical citings of chapter and verse.

Killer logic? I will concede killer, of course, but absolutely not logic.

Incidentally, haven't we had enough guardians of devotion and watch dogs of the sampradaya?

Mr. Ananda said...

Regrettably much of the "parallel pointing" between Puranic doctrines and quantum physics is so very wishy and imprecise; so much so that the so-called cryptic descriptions of the fundamentals of existence can be re-interpreted to "magic match" with just about any damn theory...

I concede with the comments on Advaita's steel logic. It's steely all right, in that it refuses to bend and see any contradicting points of view, even if they might be legitimate interpretations of the shastras — what to speak of ideas outside the strict and narrow scriptural theories. But his logical reasoning holds its own like kick-ass killer tomatoes, yeah!

shiva said...

Miss Anonymiss

After reading your funny rant I laughed pretty hard because you reminded me of this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLSP05bGHkU&fmt=18

Anonymous said...

gah.
i only have 1 mn left in my hr of internet.

i whish i'd take the time to read more of your writing. this is very nice stuff indeed.

keep on writing and sharing your knowledge.

with love Manue and Bikash.

Eugene said...

Let me drink my cup of hot milk and say to you that all these religions (including fictious and bygone personages like Radha Krsna, Rama Sita etc) had been devised as any other religion by the smart priests and politicians to exploit you poor fellows, so that you'd become slaves in the hands of the religious Gurus and Popes who are supporting these numorous doctrines which are naturally forced to fight against each other. Like Vedas are a controversial symbiosis combining Advaita and Dvaita which are fighting against each other. Hindu and Muslim, Muslim and Christian, Christian and Hindu ... worlds are fighting against each other, Materialsts and Spiritualists are fighting against each others. These fighting tendencies were very profitable for those who supply both parties the various means for fighting between each other. So be as natural as you are and forget all these good and bad stories and be yourself without struggling against others to prove your inner being to be holly and wholly, and to support, nourish and enrich various ideological slave-holders.
Be Yourself and be free of all devised concepts to control and exploit your freedom!

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